La Velle E. Neal III has covered baseball for the Star Tribune since 1998 (the post-Knoblauch era). Born and raised in Chicago, he grew up following the White Sox and hating the Cubs. He attended both the University of Illinois and Illinois-Chicago and began his baseball writing career at the Kansas City Star. He can be heard occasionally on KFAN radio, lending his great baseball mind to Paul Allen and other hosts. Mark Rosen borrows him occasionally for WCCO-TV.

Twins might not be done looking at pitchers, plus plenty of other notes

Posted by: La Velle E. Neal III Updated: December 26, 2012 - 3:02 PM


After adding Vance Worley, Kevin Correia and Mike Pelfrey to the starting rotation, and signing Rich Harden to a minor league deal with hopes he can contribute in 2013, the Twins appear to be done shopping for pitchers.

Not so fast.

"I wouldn't say we're done," assistant General Manager Rob Antony said. "I wouldn't say were pushing hard. We have our feelers out there. If the situation is right, we could do something else. If not, we're O.K. too.''

Indications are that they are not going to hand out the two-year deal for $14-15 million that has become the rage this offseason (see Brandon McCarthy, Joe Blanton and Francisco Liriano).  They will let Joe Saunders walk if that is the case. Same for Brett Myers and Shawn Marcum (there are health issues with Marcum too).

But if the offseason continues and the those pitchers remain unsigned, the Twins will take a harder look at them if they lower their demands. Despite having money to spend (they could open the season with a payroll in the low $80M range) they are not going to pay what they think is too much for average pitching.

Let's see how this plays out.

Here are some other notes on the day after Christmas:

THE TWINS' THINKING ON PITCHING

I'm not asserting that the Twins made a good move or not, but their approach to Kevin Correia is their classic move.

The Twins see value in Correia making at least 26 starts in each of the previous four seasons. They feel he was on his way to 190-plus innings last season when the Pirates dealt for Wandy Rodriguez for the stretch drive and bumped Correia to the bullpen. To them, $5 million a year for a back of a rotation guy is reasonable.

Now, Correia has to prove he can pitch in this league and in a park that's not as pitcher-friendly as PNC Park. The Jason Marquis experiment was a disaster last season, so there's concerns about Correia attempting to make a similar jump. But the Twins believe that Correia has a little bulldog in him and will go at hitters and get them to put the ball in play.

Based on their thinking, giving McCarthy $15 million over two years isn't wise. McCarthy has not thrown more than 170 innings in a season and has had injuries (not counting the line drive off his noggin last year).

So let's watch how Correia and McCarthy fare in 2013. McCarthy has the potential to be very good. Correia has been reliable. Who will have the better season?

My take: If you want to stick to your guns and not pay McCarthy because of health concerns or not pay Edwin Jackson because $13 million a year is too much for a career .500 pitcher, that's fine. But keep in mind that if all the cool kids are doing it and you don't take a chance once in awhile, you'll be stuck on an island alone with your principles when it's time to dance.

One of these years, the Twins have to take the plunge.

PACKED CAMP

I need to clarify that the Twins have 34 pitchers coming to camp in February.

They have 22 pitchers on their 40-man roster who automatically get to report with the major leaguers. Last week, the Twins signed Harden and announced that righthanders Bryan Augenstein, Nick Blackburn, Deolis Guerra, Alex Meyer, Lester Oliveros and Anthony Slama were being invited to camp.

But there's more. Over a month ago, the Twins announced that right-handed pitchers Samuel Deduno, Shairon Martis, Luis Perdomo, Esmerling Vasquez and P.J. Walters were invited to camp as well. That's what I failed to mention last week.

So the Twins will have a record 34 pitchers in camp in February, one more than last spring.

WINTER LEAGUE UPDATES

Miguel Sano is batting .265 with 4 homers and 14 RBI for Estrellas of the Dominican Winter League. Not great numbers - and he's not playing every day - but the Twins are pleased. "Any time you can get playing time at age 19 in a league like that, it's a good thing," Twins GM Terry Ryan said last week. "He's holding his own down there."

Eddie Rosario is balling in Puerto Rico. He went 3-for-5 with a home run on Saturday and was a triple shy of the cycle. His .349 batting average is second in the league to go with his four homers and 15 RBI. He's playing the outfield in winter ball but the Twins intend to keep him at second base, where his bat could really be an asset.

Chris Colabello spent seven seasons in independent ball before signing with Class AA New Britain last season, going .284-19-98. He's gone nuts in the Mexican League, going .332-17-44 in 57 games. He's third in batting, tied for third in home runs and first in slugging percentage. Remember, this is the Mexican League. And Colabello is 29 and hasn't played above Class AA.

I have a friend who reads the Latin papers for winter ball news. Drew Butera had to leave Estrellas because of bronchitis but returned to the club a few weeks later. My friend said the papers made a big deal about about Butera returning to help the cause.

You can look up stats of every Twins player in an offseason league here.

Etc.

The Twins, as of now, have 66 players scheduled to report to camp. That's 34 pitchers and 32 position players. Add 22 coaches and that's 88 people in uniform - close to a numbers crunch.

The Twins will hand out 88 uniform numbers but have eight retired numbers. That's 96. There will be some 93's 94's and 95's handed out this spring.

Ryan Doumit will take over Steve Liddle's old No. 9.

Oliveros will be at camp but will be rehabbing from Tommy John surgery he had in August.

One more thing. With Pelfrey, Diamond and Correia all being ground ball pitchers, the Twins' need to make sure they have reliable fielders behind them.


 

ADVERTISEMENT

Chicago 11/27/14 11:30 AM
Detroit
Philadelphia 11/27/14 3:30 PM
Dallas
Seattle 11/27/14 7:30 PM
San Francisco
Cleveland 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Washington 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis
Tennessee 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
NY Giants 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Cincinnati 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Oakland 11/30/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
New Orleans 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Carolina 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Arizona 11/30/14 3:05 PM
Atlanta
New England 11/30/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Denver 11/30/14 7:30 PM
Kansas City
Miami 12/1/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
Atlanta 6:00 PM
Washington
Golden State 6:30 PM
Miami
Detroit 7:00 PM
Milwaukee
Sacramento 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 8:00 PM
Denver
Winnipeg 6:00 PM
Columbus
Ottawa 7:00 PM
St. Louis
Los Angeles 7:00 PM
Nashville
Edmonton 7:30 PM
Dallas
Colorado 8:00 PM
Arizona
New Jersey 9:00 PM
Vancouver
Calgary 9:00 PM
Anaheim
Fresno State 52 FINAL
East Carolina 58
Morgan State 73 FINAL
Elon 74
Purdue 82 2nd Half 0:40
Missouri 58
Hawaii 52 2nd Half 7:47
Marist 45
Liberty 3:00 PM
North Florida
MD-Eastern Shore 3:30 PM
Bucknell
Western Carolina 3:30 PM
Georgia State
BYU 3:30 PM
Chaminade
Evansville 5:00 PM
Green Bay
Alabama 6:00 PM
Arizona State
UT Martin 6:00 PM
Bethune-Cookman
SE Missouri St 6:00 PM
Bowling Green
NC Central 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Fair-Dickinson 6:00 PM
Columbia
Citadel 6:00 PM
Florida State
Houston 6:00 PM
Harvard
William Peace 6:00 PM
High Point
Texas-Arlington 6:00 PM
Kentucky
St Francis-NY 6:00 PM
La Salle
Boston Univ 6:00 PM
New Hampshire
Chicago State 6:00 PM
Oakland
Ark-Pine Bluff 6:00 PM
Ohio
Hartford 6:00 PM
Quinnipiac
Saint Peters 6:00 PM
Rutgers
Jackson State 6:00 PM
St Bonaventure
Long Island 6:00 PM
Saint Josephs
Hofstra 6:00 PM
South Florida
Western Ky 6:00 PM
Stony Brook
Loyola-Maryland 6:00 PM
Syracuse
Penn 6:00 PM
Temple
Detroit 6:00 PM
Toledo
Tennessee St 6:00 PM
Virginia
Northern Iowa 6:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Western Ill 6:00 PM
William & Mary
Ohio Valley 6:00 PM
Wofford
Toccoa Falls 6:00 PM
Presbyterian
Mount Ida 6:00 PM
UMass Lowell
Kansas State 6:30 PM
Arizona
Binghamton 6:30 PM
Army
Central Arkansas 6:30 PM
Char Southern
Howard 6:30 PM
UMBC
VA Commonwealth 6:30 PM
Oregon
Akron 6:30 PM
Penn State
Arkansas 6:30 PM
SMU
Jacksonville St 7:00 PM
Alabama A&M
TX A&M-CC 7:00 PM
Bradley
Eastern Ill 7:00 PM
Creighton
St Xavier 7:00 PM
Ill-Chicago
Northern Ariz 7:00 PM
Middle Tennessee
Nebraska Omaha 7:00 PM
Nebraska
NC A&T 7:00 PM
Saint Louis
Columbia International 7:00 PM
SC State
Troy 7:00 PM
Southern Miss
St Francis-PA 7:00 PM
Texas
Northwestern St 7:00 PM
Texas Tech
Loyola-Chicago 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Southern U 7:00 PM
Tulane
Norfolk State 7:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Jarvis Christian 7:00 PM
Abilene Christian
MN-Crookston 7:00 PM
North Dakota St
Lamar 7:05 PM
Arkansas State
IUPUI 7:05 PM
Drake
San Francisco 7:30 PM
Fla Gulf Coast
Miami-Florida 8:00 PM
Charlotte
Air Force 8:00 PM
Colorado
Boise State 8:00 PM
Idaho
Louisiana 8:00 PM
Oral Roberts
Buffalo 8:00 PM
Grand Canyon
Maryland 8:30 PM
Iowa State
Northwestern 8:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Villanova 9:00 PM
Michigan
Pittsburgh 9:00 PM
San Diego St
Bristol University 9:05 PM
Sacramento St
Cal State Fullerton 10:00 PM
USC
Delaware 10:00 PM
Stanford
Ohio U 6:00 PM
Miami-Ohio
LSU 11/27/14 6:30 PM
Texas A&M
(6) TCU 11/27/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Northern Ill 11/28/14 10:00 AM
Western Mich
Nebraska 11/28/14 11:00 AM
Iowa
Western Ky 11/28/14 11:00 AM
(19) Marshall
UCF 11/28/14 11:00 AM
So Florida
Houston 11/28/14 11:00 AM
SMU
Akron 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Kent State
Ball State 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Bowling Green
Buffalo 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Massachusetts
Toledo 11/28/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
Arkansas 11/28/14 1:30 PM
(17) Missouri
Navy 11/28/14 2:00 PM
South Alabama
(13) Arizona State 11/28/14 2:30 PM
(12) Arizona
Stanford 11/28/14 2:30 PM
(9) UCLA
(21) Colorado State 11/28/14 2:30 PM
Air Force
Virginia 11/28/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
East Carolina 11/28/14 7:30 PM
Tulsa
North Texas 11/29/14 11:00 AM
TX-San Antonio
Old Dominion 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Fla Atlantic
(16) Georgia Tech 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(8) Georgia
Kentucky 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(24) Louisville
So Carolina 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(23) Clemson
West Virginia 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
Rice 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Louisiana Tech
Michigan 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(7) Ohio State
Purdue 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Indiana
Illinois 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Northwestern
Cincinnati 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Temple
NC State 11/29/14 11:30 AM
North Carolina
Syracuse 11/29/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Louisiana 11/29/14 11:30 AM
Troy
Utah 11/29/14 12:00 PM
Colorado
Texas State 11/29/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Idaho 11/29/14 1:00 PM
Appalachian St
Wyoming 11/29/14 2:00 PM
New Mexico
New Mexico St 11/29/14 2:00 PM
Arkansas State
UAB 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(4) Miss State 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Notre Dame 11/29/14 2:30 PM
USC
(10) Michigan State 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Penn State
(22) Minnesota 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(14) Wisconsin
(5) Baylor 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Texas Tech
Florida 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State
Rutgers 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Maryland
San Jose St 11/29/14 2:30 PM
San Diego St
Tennessee 11/29/14 3:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Kansas 11/29/14 3:00 PM
(11) Kansas State
Connecticut 11/29/14 3:00 PM
Memphis
BYU 11/29/14 3:30 PM
California
ULM 11/29/14 5:00 PM
Ga Southern
Middle Tennessee 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Hawaii 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Fresno State
Wake Forest 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Duke
Pittsburgh 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Miami-Florida
(15) Auburn 11/29/14 6:45 PM
(2) Alabama
(3) Oregon 11/29/14 7:00 PM
Oregon State
Utah State 11/29/14 9:15 PM
(25) Boise State
Washington 11/29/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
Nevada 11/29/14 9:30 PM
UNLV
Hamilton 11/30/14 5:00 PM
Calgary
Belmont 55 FINAL
Kent State 58
Robert Morris 75 FINAL
Coppin State 58
UMKC 48 FINAL
Western Ill 71
Manhattan 48 FINAL
La Salle 61
UC Santa Barbara 34 FINAL
Arizona 61
Santa Clara 27 1st Half 3:47
LSU 17
Tulsa 24 1st Half 1:45
Texas Southern 29
SE Missouri St 0 1st Half 16:20
Ole Miss 4
Air Force 4:00 PM
Army
Towson 4:00 PM
UMBC
St Bonaventure 4:30 PM
Penn State
Texas-El Paso 5:00 PM
Kansas State
Cheyney 5:00 PM
MD-Eastern Shore
Johnson C. Smith 5:00 PM
NC A&T
Winthrop 5:00 PM
NC Central
USC Upstate 5:00 PM
SC State
Quinnipiac 5:00 PM
(2) Notre Dame
Buffalo 5:30 PM
(8) Duke
Washington St 6:00 PM
Hampton
Bryant 6:00 PM
Brown
Vermont 6:00 PM
Central Conn St
St Francis-NY 6:00 PM
NJIT
(21) Rutgers 6:00 PM
Wagner
IUPU-Ft Wayne 6:00 PM
Coastal Carolina
Fairleigh Dickinson 6:00 PM
Monmouth
Jacksonville 6:00 PM
UCF
SIU-Edwardsville 6:00 PM
IUPUI
Duquesne 6:00 PM
Howard
Fordham 6:00 PM
Delaware
Saint Josephs 6:00 PM
Drexel
Liberty 6:00 PM
Elon
New Hampshire 6:00 PM
Penn
Valparaiso 6:00 PM
Akron
Grambling 6:00 PM
Georgia Tech
Western Ky 6:00 PM
(12) Louisville
Arizona State 6:00 PM
Miami-Florida
Charleston Southern 6:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Southern 6:00 PM
(22) Georgia
Tenn Tech 6:00 PM
Mercer
Hillsdale 6:00 PM
Eastern Michigan
Ohio U 6:00 PM
Northern Ky
Gardner-Webb 6:00 PM
Appalachian St
Bucknell 6:00 PM
Youngstown St
Lafayette 6:00 PM
Rider
Lehigh 6:00 PM
Saint Peters
George Mason 6:00 PM
Navy
High Point 6:00 PM
Davidson
Old Dominion 6:00 PM
Virginia Tech
SW Assemblies 6:30 PM
Houston Baptist
LSU-Alexandria 6:30 PM
Northwestern St
Wofford 6:30 PM
Jacksonville St
ULM 7:00 PM
(25) Miss State
Morgan State 7:00 PM
(20) Oklahoma St
Lyon 7:00 PM
Central Arkansas
Lamar 7:00 PM
Texas State
Mobile 7:00 PM
SE Louisiana
St Edwards 7:00 PM
Stephen F Austin
Lipscomb 7:00 PM
Murray State
UAB 7:00 PM
Loyola-Chicago
Northern Iowa 7:00 PM
(17) Iowa
Southern U 7:00 PM
Minnesota
Harvard 7:00 PM
Holy Cross
Colorado 8:00 PM
Denver
Portland State 8:00 PM
Oregon
Montana State 8:00 PM
San Diego
Idaho 8:00 PM
Wyoming
Pepperdine 9:00 PM
Cal Poly
Long Beach St 9:00 PM
Boise State
Nevada 9:30 PM
San Francisco
Yale 10:59 PM
Alaska-Anchorage
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: What do you think of the new Twins home uniforms?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT